Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Sew Basic Dress Patterns

Cutting the fabric for a dress has always been my least favorite part of sewing. When I make a dress for my girls I first have to find my pattern pieces. Typically I select a sleeve pattern from one pattern, a skirt from another pattern, a bodice from a third. 

Then I start making adjustments. Most patterns don't fit our modesty standards so I add a half inch to a neckline, two inches to a sleeve, and maybe ten inches to a hem. 

Then, finally, I'm ready to cut out the fabric. The sewing itself is the fun part, except that with all my changing and adapting, sometimes pieces don't fit together well. I consider myself an experienced sewer and can usually manage to find a way to pull and push the pieces together. But it doesn't make sewing more fun.

But several months ago, Michelle Oberholtzer contacted me about the new line of patterns she was designing. This sounded exactly what I needed - simple, easy-to-sew, modest patterns.

Michelle started Sew Basic Patterns to help frustrated moms like me who just want a simple dress pattern for their girls without adjusting three different patterns to find one that works. Michelle just completed the first pattern in what (I hope) is a series of patterns.  Michelle gave me a sample copy of her girl's dress pattern to review.

The girl's dress pattern includes two style of skirt (gathered and fitted) and two sleeve options (gathered and fitted.) I tried both options and both fit together well. It was such a fun simple pattern to use. I made the pattern exactly as it was with no changes except for adding a small cuff or ruffle to the sleeve edge.

I've been teaching my daughter to sew, but I never left her cut out a dress because of the chaos of my pattern. But she was able to completely cut this dress out on her own. The pattern paper is sturdy and not like the thin tissue in many patterns and should stand up to lots of use. 

Patterns are available from size 1 to size 8. I used the size eight pattern. I was trying to make the dresses a bit too large for my seven-year-old. But they are quite a bit too big for her - she is a little bit small for her age. I don't mind, she'll wear them some day and I have more little girls coming along behind her. From what I can tell, the measurements are very accurate so take that into considerations when deciding which size pattern to purchase.

You can purchase Sew Basic patterns at Etsy or contact Michelle at sewbasicdresses @gmail.com I'm hoping these pattern sell well and Michelle is inspired to continue on into junior sizes - which I think are even harder to find than girl's sizes.

Thanks Michelle for serving us moms with your well-designed patterns.

Disclaimer: I received a free pattern, but all the opinions in this review are my own.


  1. The dresses are just lovely! I have had the same problem in making dresses for myself. I finally have adapted several to make a universal pattern I use for all of my dresses. I so enjoy making them now. I enjoyed the picture of your daughter cutting out the pattern. Passing down such important skills. Wonderful.

  2. I have the same trouble ;seemed all my patterns needed adjusted somewhere. I'm looking forward to trying these. Maybe i can put a size or two on my Christmas wish list;) I have three girls,five,three ands seven months.

  3. I have this issue with patterns too, and get really frustrated. I traced a favorite modest skirt I had that was worn out and made my own pattern, it's just and 8 gore A line type skirt. Dress design without a complete pattern is beyond what I know how to do though. I would wear both of theses styles (with slightly longer 3/4 sleeves) in ladies sizes, they're really simple, and look comfortable and practical. Great job on them!
    Cathy in NY state.

  4. Always great to find pretty comfortable and MODEST clothes! I have looked and looked for easy patterns for my 12 yr old grandaughter to sew. These are just right!

  5. That is wonderful! The dresses turned out so pretty too. I'm getting ready to make an orchestra concert dress for my daughter. She wears a size 14 and fortunately I happened to have a modest and conservative pattern that should work well. They are hard to find though. Hopefully she will make the larger sized patterns in the future.

  6. Funny! I think my pattern came in the mail on the day you posted this. I have one daughter and I am not an intelligent seamstress. matching patterns never work for me. I am definitely putting a lot of hope in this one.

  7. I would like to have a phone number to contact about the dress patterns...thank you


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